Visiting International Applicants through the Office of Medical Student Research and International Studies

The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s Office of Medical Student Research and International Studies office is currently accepting applications for students who have completed their core clinical training and are in their final year of medical education. Applications will be accepted for our next academic year after March 13, 2023.

Students from schools participating in the Visiting Student Learning Opportunities (VSLO) Program:

Our international visiting elective catalog is available in the VSLO system. Please be aware that slot availbility changes on a daily and weekly basis and cannot be guaranteed. You can only indicate up to two choices for electives. Once your elective rotation has been confirmed, please be advised that no change/date adjustments will be made. Students whose home institution participates in the program will be able to view our catalog for electives directly through the VSLO® Program for Institutions | AAMC

Students from schools not participating in the VSLO program:

For students from institutions that are not participants in the VSLO, please complete our paper application process. There is a searchable course catalog for our offered courses and their spaces on the second page of the application form. The completed application and required documents can be submitted to us at MSRIS@medschool.pitt.eduClick here to view and download the application.

The following are some answers, as well as information, to the most asked questions about our program:

1. We have a searchable course catalog for our offered courses and their available spaces. You can also access the catalog on the second page of our paper application (downloadable above). Be aware that any open slot can change on a daily and weekly basis so we cannot guarantee space availablity. These slots are filled by UPSOM, domestic visiting and international visiting students. We encourage you to apply for the electives you plan to make a career in. Dates for clinical electives must be in accordance with the UPSOM rotation schedule. You can only apply to two electives. Starting in AY 23-24 the Department of Psychiatry (PSYC)  has supplemental requirements to the application which can be found in additional resources below. Once your elective has been confirmed, please be advised that no change/date adjustments will be made.

2. The only required fees we have are a $4,500 elective fee and a $50 registration fee per elective. THESE FEES ARE NOT PAID UPON SUBMISSION OF AN APPLICATION. Fees will be paid by Flywire, ONLY after acceptance by both the Board and the requested rotation department. If approved, you will receive an acceptance email with payment information. Please be aware that since this program is only for international visiting students the payment system set-up with Flywire is only for payment from international banks to US banks and will not work with payments from US bank to US bank. Students can be accepted for up to two 4-week elective experiences. These experiences do not have to be consecutive or in the same department. Due to FERPA regulations we will not engage with any family members regarding your elective or payment requirements, we will only engage with students that have applied to our program.

3. The malpractice insurance requirement can be purchased after you have been accepted. For your application, please include a letter stating that you will purchase the required coverage upon acceptance. Health insurance must cover any necessary hospitalization or doctor’s visit due to illness or injury. Proof of insurance is a requirement and must be provided before an accepted student will be approved to enter the clinical setting.

4.  For our clearance requirements, only the completed PA Act 34 report and the filled out application form for the PA Act 33 report are required when applying. The completed PA Act 33 report can then be submitted to us upon acceptance. The PA Act 73 report is completed when you arrive in Pittsburgh, upon acceptance. Instructions for completing these reports can be found below in additional resources.

5. If your medical school’s curriculum is conducted in English, then the English proficiency exam requirement can be disregarded only if your home institution can provide in their letter of credientials that you have strong English proficiency. TOEFL scores must be 100 or higher to apply. Duolingo reports must be 120 or higher to apply.

6. Your completed and signed AAMC Immunization form will need to be submitted with your application. Any vaccine series currently in process can be worked on after you apply, please just include a note on the form to clarify any situations of incomplete records. You can find additional information on the "information for required immunizations" listed below in additional resources.

7. Visa information can be found below in Additional Resources.

8. All applications are reviewed on the strength of english proficiency, academic standing, statement of interest and the availability of the requested elective. Your letter of intent should be 200 words or less about why you are interested in the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and the electives in which you are applying. The time frame from submission to acceptance is between 2-4 months. Please be aware that if you are applying for MED or SURG these are the most requested departments by UPSOM students, domestic visiting students as well as international visiting students. Once your elective has been confirmed, please be advised that no change/date adjustment will be made.

9. The USMLE Step 1 exam is not required to apply. Your home institution will just need to confirm that all required examinations for your home country have been completed in the letter of credentials.

10.   The deadline to submit applications is 3 months before the start date of the elective in which you are applying. This is to allow for proper review and preparation of your application and any accepted rotations through the requested department. Applications submitted after the 3 month deadline will not be considered. We are aware that Period 1 is out of the 3 month timeline, however no applications will be accepted until March 13, 2023.

11. Our applications are currently being reviewed on a first come first serve basis. Please be aware that we do not reconsider after denial.

12. We will start accepting applications for academic year 23-24 on or after March 13, 2023. We are aware that Period 1 is out of the 3 month timeline, however no applications will be accepted until March 13, 2023.

If you have any further questions, please contact us at You may not reach out to UPMC/UPSOM staff/faculty or department coordinators directly with unsolicited emails. Questions and answers will only be addressed via this email box. Thank you.

Additional Resources